Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I did it my way

I was looking at my Larger Than Life blocks today and noticed something a little off. In the magazine photographs, the 4th row corners look pointier than mine. Now, I won't pretend that this particular row was easy for me. I never claimed to be an expert at crochet, but I've done a fair share of it in the past, so I thought I knew how to read a pattern. For the life of me, I could not match the written instructions to the chart. Having finally figured out how to read a crochet chart (it was one of those "AHA!" moments), I was puzzled as to why the diagram didn't seem to match the instructions.

Forgive me while I obsess on this in more detail. Perhaps some of you advanced hookers can solve this for me.

Round 4 of the pattern begins as follows: "Ch 1, sc in sl , *ch 5, sl st in 5th ch from hook, sk 2 dc, sc in next dc .... " and so on.

My reading of this gobbley gook is: Chain 1, single crochet in the slip stitch from the end of round 3, (begin repeat with) chain 5, slip stitch in the 5th chain from the hook, skip 2 double crochet from round 3, single crochet in the next double crochet from round 3 ...

This is what the chart looks like for this part:
The chart appears to say this: chain one, single crochet (in the slip stitch from row 3), chain 5, skip 2 double crochet from row 3, single crochet in the 3rd double crochet from round 3...

I couldn't figure out if I was supposed to close up that 5 chain loop, or just skip 2 dc and keep it open. In the chart it appears to be open. How to slip stitch in the chain? Through the back? Through one side? No matter how I did it, it looked wonky. Since it was easier to keep it open, and it appeared to follow the chart, I decided that the pattern must be wrong and did it my way.

This is how it looks as I've interpreted the chart:
Tonight I decided to try again without looking at the chart. After 3 attempts at those corners, I think that this is how it's supposed to look, if I follow the written instructions:I checked the Interweave Crochet website for pattern corrections and didn't find any for this bag. I also looked at finished blocks made by members of the CAL and no one else seemed to have this interpretation issue. The only obvious conclusion is that I'm not reading the chart correctly. Maybe I'm taking it too literally. The bottom line is that my version is MUCH easier and I've already finished 3 blocks. Someone once said that if you make the same "mistake" 3 times you've created a pattern. I may just make a few more using the designer's pattern to mix it up a little (it took too long to make that version and I don't have the heart to frog it).

Compare and contrast:

Pattern as written
My block
I do like the pointy corners in the pattern version, but mine seems more airy. Yeah. Airy!
It's my block party and I'll dance any way I want to!

Just to rile you up a little, I was watching passively listening to N.C.I.S (it's a Mark Harmon thing) tonight while obsessing over crochet, and heard a character define a blog this way: "Something losers put online so everyone can read."

HUMPH! Who's the loser?


loriticajane said...

I don't usually knit from a chart because I lose my place really REALLY easily, but looking at the crochet chart just made my head spin! Your squares look great! I have been trying to follow all the great online tutorials to make my own. Yeah, not so good, but I am having fun trying! =)

loriticajane said...

And? Personally, I like your square better.